If this was indeed Melo Trimble’s final home game as a Terrapin, he went out in style, nailing the game winning last-second three-pointer, to lift Maryland past the Michigan State Spartans, 63-60 before a packed house, celebrating at Xfinity Center on Senior Day.
Maryland slugged it out with the Spartans, a double-bye in the upcoming conference tournament and second place on the line and the fans got their monies worth.
With the score tied 60-60 Michigan State passed the ball to Nick Ward who was all set to make a layup but Maryland caught a break when he fumbled the ball out of bounds with six seconds to go in the game.
Trimble then inbounded the ball to Justin Jackson who passed it back to Trimble.
He dribbled the ball to the left side of the key and rose up behind the three-point line, and as he has down countless times in his career, usually by driving to the basket which was coach Mark Turgeon’s preference, he nailed the winning bucket with 1 second to play in the game.
After shooting the ball he just stood still and watched it swish through the net. Trimble then grabbed the “Maryland” name on his jersey and looked out into the crowd, perhaps staring down his doubters.
The Maryland bench erupted and ran onto the floor but was ushered back to the bench as the game was not over.
Maryland survived a last second desperation heave by Michigan State that clanked off the rim and then the celebration began as his teammates hugged Trimble, celebrating the victory and realizing that this could possibly be his last home game as a Terrapin.
The Terps win put a bow on Senior Day for Damonte Dodd (seven points and three rebounds) and L.G. Gill (two points) who were playing their last game at Xfinity Center.
They improved to (24-7 12-6 Big Ten) good enough for second place in the conference and a date to play on Friday as the third-seed in the Big Ten Tournament set to play in Washington D.C. this year at the Verizon Center. This is the third year in a row the Terps have finished in second place in conference play.
Trimble led the way with 16 points and six rebounds. Freshman Justin Jackson, added 15 points and six rebounds. Anthony Cowan chipped in with 11 points, five rebounds and five assists.
In the first half the lead seesawed back and forth and there were five ties before the Spartans took a 28-27 lead into the break.
In the second half the Terp’s had their largest lead of the game at 45-37 on a Gill layup but the Spartans would go on a 9-0 run to regain the lead at 46-45 on a layup by Ward with 10:01 to play in the game.
The lead then seesawed back and forth and Maryland was up 58-53 on a Jackson three-pointer with 4:45 to go. The game would come down to the 10th tie of the game at 60-60 setting up Trimble, perhaps the Terrapin’s best-ever closer, with another heroic finish.
In a defensive contest, the Terps shot 42 percent from the floor, making eight of 25 three-pointers and 11 of 16 free throws.
Meanwhile, the Spartans shot 37 percent, making eight of 21 from beyond the arc and eight of 10 at the charity stripe.
Michigan State out rebounded Maryland 37-33.
Michigan State was led in scoring and rebounding by Ward who finished with 22 and 16. Miles Bridges chipped in with 18 points and eight rebounds in a losing effort for the (18-13, 10-8) tied for fourth and fifth-seeded Spartans.